Private Sector Event

Sustainability in Finance – Role of ESG in Capital Markets

Sponsored by TBC Capital and Galt & Taggart

Thursday, 2 May 2024, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm (Asia/Tbilisi)
Paragraph Hotel, Ballroom 2

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Panelists

Giorgi AlpaidzeDeputy CEO, CFO of Georgia Capital

Formerly BGEO Group CFO, Giorgi Apaidze joined BGEO as head of the group's finance, funding, and investor relations in 2016. He has extensive international experience in banking, accounting, and finance. Previously, he was a senior manager in Ernst & Young LLP's Greater New York City assurance practice. He holds a BBA from the European School of Management in Georgia and is a US certified public accountant.

Richard BarkerBoard Member, International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB)

Before joining the ISSB, Richard Barker served as deputy dean and professor of accounting at Saïd Business School, University of Oxford, UK. In this capacity, he led Oxford Saïd’s sustainable business initiatives. He has published a wide range of academic research papers on accounting and sustainability disclosures. He has a bachelor’s degree in history and economics from University of Oxford and a PhD from University of Cambridge, UK.

Mary ChachanidzeManaging Director, TBC Capital

Mary Chachanidze has more than 18 years of experience in banking and investments. She joined TBC Bank in 2017 as the deputy director of corporate and investment banking, managing the bank’s large corporate clients. In 2020 Ms.Cachanidze became managing director of TBC Capital (investment banking subsidiary of TBC Bank) and since 2021 is head of investment banking and WM at TBC Bank. Prior to joining TBC, Ms.Cachanidze held different positions from investment analyst to chief investment officer at SEAF (a global investment firm headquartered in Washington, DC), which oversaw investment transactions in local and international markets. She is a graduate of Harvard Business School’s executive program, a CFA charterholder, and has na MBA and BBA from the European School of Management.

Suzanne Gaboury Director General, Private Sector Operations, ADB

Suzanne Gaboury leads ADB’s private sector investment in Asia and the Pacific across the spectrum, covering areas such as equity, debt, guarantees, and cofinancing in various sectors. Ms. Gaboury has more than 28 years of professional experience in private sector finance and emerging markets, with extensive international networks and stakeholder relationships. She has driven ADB’s private sector project investment value in excess of $35 billion, which includes financing for transformational climate action projects in infrastructure, renewable energy, agribusiness value chain including forestry, and financial institutions sectors. Ms. Gaboury has direct experience in more than 70 countries, including some 40 emerging economies.

Begum Gursoy Director of Debt Capital Markets and Sustainable Finance, Sustainalytics

Begum Gursory is a director of Sustainalytics’ opinion services. She oversees the business strategy while acting as a bridge between Sustainalytics and its external stakeholders. She advocates for sustainable finance standards and taxonomies. She represents Sustainalytics within industry working groups on novel structures and sectoral criteria developments. Coming from a financial institution and asset management background, Ms. Gursoy joined Sustainalytics in 2018, and prior to her current role, she acted as a regional leader for the research of Asia Pacific for Second-Party Opinions.

Joaquín J. Jugo Managing Director, Global Sovereign Solutions for Public Sector Group, Citi

Joaquín Jugo brings over 35 years of experience in the financial industry, primarily with Citigroup, where he currently leads Global Sovereign Solutions for the Public Sector Group. This group specializes in debt advisory, digitization, and ESG solutions for public entities worldwide. Previously, he managed Citigroup's public sector operations across Latin America, Central America, the Caribbean, and Ecuador.

Ekaterine MikabadzeVice-Governor, Member of the Board at National Bank of Georgia

Ekaterine Mikabadze has been serving as vice-governor of the National Bank of Georgia since November 2023 and as a board member since July 2021. Prior to her current role, Ms. Mikabadze served as the first deputy minister at the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia. Additionally, she has held diverse roles across Georgia's economic and financial sectors.

Levan ShavkatsishviliChief Executive Officer, Galt & Taggart

Levan Shavkatsishvili joined Galt & Taggart as the CEO in October 2023. Prior to that he headed corporate banking at TBC Bank. During 2017-18, he served as a director at Greensill Capital in London. His finance career began at Citibank's London office, where he worked from 2010 to 2017 in the structured finance team as vice president. He did an MBA at the Manchester Business School and completed the executive program (SEP) at Stanford in 2023.

Moderator

Rosanna LockwoodBroadcast Journalist and Presenter

Rosanna Lockwood is a qualified broadcast journalist and presenter with a dynamic international career. She has extensive experience covering major economic and business stories across the Middle East, Russia, and Asia for more than a decade. Ms. Lockwood's work involves high-profile interviews and moderating discussions on global economic issues. She has a keen expertise in the financial sectors of the regions she has worked in.

The seminar discussed the rise of environmental, social and governance (ESG)-themed capital market instruments as a key mechanism for directing climate finance to sustainable projects. It delved into the evolving landscape of capital markets in Georgia, focusing notably on the surge of ESG issuances. The National Bank of Georgia played a pivotal role in this transformation, with recent initiatives aimed at regulating ESG corporate bonds. These regulations, proposed in 2023, are anticipated to bring substantial benefits to the market, aligning it with global standards while fostering investor confidence.

Key factors driving the shift toward ESG issuances include a growing investor appetite for sustainable investments and regulatory pressures. The seminar highlighted the importance of developing the ESG bond market, not only for aligning business strategies with Sustainable Development Goals but also for attracting diverse investors.

The role of international financial institutions, such as ADB, in facilitating the development of ESG capital markets was also discussed. International financial institutions support capacity building and knowledge transfer initiatives, crucial for strengthening local expertise and institutional capacity in emerging markets.

Challenges associated with thematic bond investing were acknowledged, including the need for robust sustainability disclosures. Integrating sustainability factors into financial reporting can incentivize companies to align their strategies with sustainable goals.

The seminar provided insights into investor preferences for ESG issuances, highlighting the diverse range of investors interested in such instruments. Sectors like renewable energy, transportation, and infrastructure have shown significant uptake in issuing ESG bonds, driven by factors such as regulatory incentives and investor demand.

Looking ahead, the outlook for the sustainable bond market in Georgia and the region appears promising, with a forecasted increase in issuances. Investment banks play a crucial role in developing capital markets, particularly with a focus on ESG and sustainability. They support issuers in overcoming challenges and structuring ESG bonds to address specific objectives, leveraging their expertise and market knowledge.

GCAP's experience in issuing sustainability-linked bonds, including the first green bond from the Caucasus region, highlighted the benefits of such instruments, including heightened demand and improved investor engagement. Overall, the seminar emphasized the transformative potential of ESG bonds in driving sustainable finance and capital market development in Georgia and beyond.

Sponsored by

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Galt & Taggart logo